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Headscratchers: The Millennium Trilogy
  • In Played with Fire, Lisbeth is accused of a triple murder and becomes the most wanted fugitive in Sweden. The book also mentions that she has an identical twin sister, so how did that sister avoid getting mixed up in the story? (Perhaps this is discussed in Hornet's Nest, which I haven't read yet) It seems like she, lacking Lisbeth's resources or motives, would have been arrested by mistake at some point or turned herself in to clear things up.
    • Lack of tattoos. Lack of piercings. Lack of dyed hair.
    • Also, she doesn't live in Sweden, she didn't have Bjurman as her tutor, and more importantly, Lisbeth was accused due to fingerprints, which are unique (and no, twins don't have the same fingerprints, it's not genetic).
    • Actually, I don't recall them being stated to be identical. They were described as being incredibly different and Camilla was specifically described as beautiful, which Lisbeth was not.
  • This is more griping than anything else, but Zala-fucking-chenko. He was built throughout the entire thing as a master criminal on par with Moriarty himself, and the reveal that he was Salander's father was just freaking masterful, but then we finally meet him, the man behind it all...and he's something of a douche. Also, all that talk earlier in the book about how the flesh trade was chump change got me thinking that the prostitution ring was a some sort of cover for Zala, that he was actually smuggling drugs and/or weapons and that the whole prostitute thing was his way of getting some mooks to pay for his shipment and set up some convenient fall-guys to boot, or something. Am I crazy, or didn't Neidermann imply that there was more going on here earlier in the book? It was a let down when nothing came of it.
    • I think that was kind of the point of all three books, that when you hold a light up to it, all this "evil" is just petty, venal, grubby small shit with self-serving rationalizations.
    • At some point, Niedermann hired the goons from MC Svavelsjo to sell a large quantity of drugs, enough to fill a large bag, and it was implied he got them from Zalachenko, who else?
    • Bear in mind that the author was planning to write at least three more books - and maybe as many as seven more - before his unexpected death.
    • Niederman was saying that Zala does deal in weapons and drugs, especially drugs, but he's been moving into prostitution and sexual slavery more and more as of late. His point wasn't that it was a cover for the former; it was that he didn't get the reason, because women are a greater risk for a lesser profit. The real reason of course is that Zala Does Not Like Women and is involved in the trade for kicks, and probably he likes to imagine that these women are Lisbeth after she crippled him. Niederman wasn't implying that Zalachenko had more going on; he was implying that Zalachenko was losing it.
  • The entire book Hornet's Nest just sort of bugs me. It's not the writing—I still found it a gripping and wonderful read. I just felt that the good guys won too easily. I'm not trying to say there weren't obstacles, but throughout the entire book, there was no doubt in my mind things were going to turn out fine for everyone. There was no real moment in the book where I actually felt scared for the characters.
    • I think the author got too attached to his characters to put them in any real danger.
    • I agree. The Section implemented their plan to steal the files and kill Zalachenko and then basically sat back in did nothing for more than 200 pages. Blomquist and his friends, despite being under almost constant surveillance, never once screw up and reveal that they know. I was kind of expecting a more interesting back-and-forth in gamesmanship between Blomquist and Clinton, but the former plays the latter like a fiddle.
    • I believe its meant to play up the fact that the Section are really just a small clique of crazy, paranoid, power-mad spooks who were not ever as good as they thought they were. Most of their plan fails because the masterinds were too old, and had been retired too long, to consider the fairly basic countermeasures the main characters took against them, such as security cameras or buying new phones. Plus, they naively bought Teleborians' assessment of Lisbeth without ever really considering that he was wrong- or in his case, making stuff up-, which shows a pretty limited knowledge of character profiling. They are incompetent, but they are too full of themselves to realise that.
      • Logistics. The need to keep absolute secrecy in the secretive and peaceful Sweden limited their number to about four full members and a very small number of hired helpers. They were too few to leave some of them in defense to avoid being spied upon, and as they did not expect serious opposition anyway, why bother?
    • I'm glad this bothered someone else! By the end of Hornet's Nest, Lisbeth has three separate groups of allies working somewhat in tandem to defend her - including Sweden's top investigative journalists, the regular police, the Security Police, a leading private security firm, and the Prime Minister of the country. That's an unusual amount of power to put behind a noir Anti-Hero, and it really robbed the book of most of its suspense.
      • In the book it's inferred, but never spoken out, the fact she could pull all the crazy stunts of a James Bond only from the moment her legal guardian Holger Palmgren brought her into the security firm and under the protective wing of Dragan Armanski. She had plenty of talent, brilliant intelligence, mastery of the computers, a will of steel, but all of these are not enough in a modern organized state. She needed a regular life, with ID papers, a regular job, a legally rented or owned home, a driving license and an environment of people she could make friends, otherwise she would just end up as a petty criminal like everyone else and forever locked in a mental hospital if caught. The person who put all things on their tracks, before there was any Lisbeth Salander, had been Dragan Armanski. Larsson placed a cue for the readers when he described plentifully the life and personality of the security boss, including the fact his genealogy went through an endless stream of countries and peoples ...which, incidentally, were hated by the kind of men Larsson had mocked all his life.
  • How does one get Jewish from Magdalena and Mary? Biblical, yes, but Jewish? Maybe it's different in Sweden, but, in my synagogue, those would be rather unusual names.
    • I don't think it was ever said that the women themselves were Jewish, only that their names were, and despite the fact that Mary is a common name among Christians (and I know a Christian girl named Magdalena), those names are still Jewish in origin.
  • It's stated that Ronald Niedermann was tortured to death. Why would they even bother considering that he Feels No Pain?
    • Just because he Feels No Pain doesn't mean that he's unaware of how mortal his wounds could be. Also, the note about torture presumably came via the police on the scene, who didn't know Lisbeth was there before Svavelsjo MC and might have interpreted Niedermann's feet being nailed to the ground as part of torture. Svavelsjo's actual actions may have been more straightforward (knifing him to death).
  • In Dragon Tattoo, how come Mikael is free between when he's found guilty and sentenced, and when he actually starts his prison term? I know it wasn't a violent crime or anything, but he just sort of wanders around Sweden as he pleases and then, "Oh, better get started on that jail time"...
    • That actually happens in real life. Many non-violent criminals have some form of supervised release before reporting for their sentences so they can get their affairs in order or while they wait for a space to open up in the prison.
  • Niedermann has his congenital analgesia and it makes him feel no pain, that's ok. But wouldn't just stress and damage on his body done by professional boxer hitting him multiple times be enough to beat fight out of him? Paolo Roberto even mentions this - the fact you don't feel it doesn't mean the damage is not there - as reason for Niedermann boxing career never having a chance. Also he was tased by Salander and shrugged it off like nothing, but electrical current disrupting muscle control has nothing to do with pain, so he should realistically be at least momentarily incapacitated.
    • Momentarily. For him, a few seconds. He was supposed to be made up from nearly 300 pounds of raw muscle and to have the physical resilience of a rock. It has been said in the book he could not have survived to maturity otherwise - his build made him able to recover from the countless injuries a man who can't feel pain endures all the time.
  • In Hornet's Nest, Lisbeth alleges that she had to deliberately starve herself during her institutionalization because the psychiatrist in charge of her care (Teleborian) was hiding drugs in her food. Does anyone know what Sweden's laws on that subject are? This troper hails from California, where hiding drugs in food, or any other sort of medication without consent, is a serious crime, regardless of the person's ability to give consent. The book makes it seem like this is not true in Sweden, because if it is, someone (either Larsson or Giannini) missed a step; but at the same time it sounds ridiculous that they did not jump on it, since the whole point of the trial was the continuing infringements of Salander's rights. And if being drugged into torpor isn't such an infringement, then what the hell is?
    • After a few years, finding evidence or witnesses should have been an impossibility. Lisbeth did not prove what Teleborian did and he defended himself furiously. The trial ended because the prosecutor dropped the charges, there was no legal verdict given.
  • In Hornet's Nest (book at least), when Salander and Zalacheno are at the hospital, why aren't they guarded before the murder of Zala? 1) Lisbeth is (considered) a violent criminal who has proven capable of evading a national manhunt for an extended period, her hideout still not discovered, and who the police has regretted underestimating time and again. In fact, if she managed to take of again careers would end for sure. 2) Either Salander or Zala may very well have wanted to kill the other very recently, for reasons that didn't vanish with their arrest. 3) A fearless and very dangerous murderer who is closely associated with Zalachenko is on the loose and could be anywhere. From a police standpoint both these assumptions are reasonable; he's a close ally of Zala and thus might want to free him, or (given Zala's statement), he might suspect Zala could sell him out and thus might want him silenced. 4) And to top it all, while neither is in good condition, they are show to both be off well-enough to leave their beds, with some difficulty, but not nearly so much that their doctor would say they couldn't possibly be able to if they absolutely wanted to.
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